Curb Appeal: 20 Modest yet Gorgeous Front Yards

If you live in a modest home, chances are your front yard is a modest size as well. (Although we fully recognize that everyone’s idea of “modest” when it comes to house and yard size is relative.) Just because you may have less front yard space than the rolling acreage upon which your dream house sits, doesn’t mean your front yard can’t be gorgeous. Thought, care, and strategic landscaping can transform even the humblest of front yards into showstoppers.

1. Symmetrical Approach.

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One of the classic methods of transforming a modest space into something seemingly grander is the use of symmetry. This is true for the front yard as well. An equal balance of elements (grass, vegetation, fencing, etc.) will provide a big bang for your landscaping buck.

2. Cottage Garden.

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When you’re short on space, bid a front lawn of grass adieu and say bonjour to a front yard garden. Perennials intermixed with rock pathways, landscape mulch, and a well-designed seating area makes this front yard garden colorfully inviting.

3. “Red Carpet” Walkway.

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No matter who or where you are, few things are more enjoyable than walking up a pathway flanked with bright, well-kept flowers. These plants lead visitors directly to the front door, and they continue on to the front of the house as well, providing a lovely continuation of landscape design.

4. Water Feature.

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Not all water features are created equal, it’s true, but it’s important that the feature doesn’t overpower the yard and vice-versa. This simple potted feature has a place of prominence but matches the water-saving aura of the rest of the front yard by not being extravagantly watery.

5. Stately Potted Topiaries.

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Potted topiaries provide a feeling of symmetry and orderliness, even amidst a free-flowing flowery front yard space. Flank the front door with a pair of well-potted topiaries for instant curb appeal.

6. Wildflowery Perennials.

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Some of the most gorgeous front yards I’ve seen have the look of a wild flowering meadow. If you go this route, you’ll want to at least consider the full-growth height of your plants (tallest near the back, shortest in front) so as to be able to see and appreciate each plant in its bloom.

7. Seamless Yard-to-House Transition.

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Carry the materials of your home’s exterior through to your front yard landscaping for a seamless transition between the two. Brick retaining walls, stone steps, even wood planters – all of these things can enhance the prominence of both your home and yard.

8. Pop of Color.

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Consider the adjective, “pop.” It’s bold, it’s intentional, it’s unmistakable. Choose one color of plant to be your yard’s Wow factor, then work in plenty of neutral elements around it. This fuchsia ground cover provides just such an eye-catching element.

9. Section it Off.

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Dividing up the very small front yard might sound counterintuitive, but it has the potential of making the space appear grander than it actually is. This is particularly true when each piece of the front yard pie is planted intentionally to lead the eye and the visitor beautifully to the front door.

10. Grand, Colorful Entrance.

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Wherever visitors are meant to enter your front yard (either from the curb itself, the driveway, or somewhere else altogether), make their entrance something special. Large potted mums, for example, are a colorful way to announce their entrance into your yard and home.

11. Simple Xeriscape.

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The combination of modern architectural details on the home and a desert climate create the perfect setting for a front yard of xeriscaping. This carefully laid out landscape design works well with the deliberate lines and planes of the house.

12. Outside-the-Box Xeriscape.

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Of course, xeriscaping doesn’t have to be confined to gravel and desert cactus. Beautiful blue flagstone slaps add color, depth, and the backbone of this beautifully diverse front yard.

13. Shorter, Friendlier Fencing.

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With its short white picket fence and bold red front door, this home seems open and inviting and ready to welcome visitors in from the moment they see it. Some well-groomed shrubbery bordering the house itself speak volumes about the care one would expect to find inside the home.

14. Thoughtful Edging.

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A nice way to transition from solid, hard surfaces (such as the sidewalk, driveway, and even the house itself) is to edge the front yard with a few feet’s worth of landscaping. Some shrubbery, flowers, even a tree or two are perfect in easing us from the visual leap to concrete to grass.

15. Filled with Flowers.

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“Stuffed to the brim” might be a better way to put it. The fact that this front lawn is reduced physically to a few square feet between the sidewalk and the landscaping is overlooked because of the vibrant sweeping landscaping leading from the lawn up to the house itself. Various flowers interspersed with shrubs, trees, even a large rock or two provide a lovely visual feast.

16. Window Boxes.

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No matter how beautifully flower-ful your front yard is (or isn’t) to begin with, window boxes overflowing with vibrant blooms adds a delightful element to any home’s curb appeal. Celebrate the growing season with some gorgeous window boxes!

17. Vertical Details.

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A flowering tree and climbing flower in this clean, modest front yard landscaping raise both the visual height of the yard itself but also the classiness of the home overall. Make sure you add a variety of heights in your landscaping for maximum curb appeal.

18. Asian-Inspired.

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There is a decidedly serene energy in Asian-inspired design, and the front yard that follows the thought process will be relaxing and inviting. The yin and yang elements of rock, stone, and vegetation produce a sense of balance, while the windows of the home itself reflect both light and nature itself. Beautiful.

19. Flowering Baskets.

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Whether hung from the eaves of your house or on a hook out in the yard’s landscaping itself, flowering baskets are a beautiful way to offer instant, fresh color and appeal to your home. Bonus: They can be changed up every year for a fresh new look to your front yard.

20. Low Maintenance Boxwoods.

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Boxwood plants are a fantastic component of a modest front yard because they provide year-round greenery, they are easily manicured and shaped (even for the amateur gardener), and the look stately no matter how big or small.